John graced us by uttering:
> Anyway, I wanted to know if there were good web sites for learning
> Japanese.  Specifically reading it.  A comprehensive list of
> pictographs, their meanings etc.  Maybe also a place where you can
> convert the pictograph to English and back?

I found this site helpful:

    http://www.sf.airnet.ne.jp/~ts/japanese/

It doesn't gloss over the kana scripts, and discusses the grammar and
sentence structure, rather than just teaching you phrases.  I also
really appreciate the depth with which it discusses the finer points of
Japanese grammar such as what the author calls "emotion markers" (eg:
yo, ne, na, et al.)

There is also a message board for specific questions:

    http://www.sf.airnet.ne.jp/~ts/japanese/message/message.cgi?list=1-30

NB: In some areas, Japanese is astoundingly _simple_ compared to English
and some Romance languages, but there's still plenty to learn and
comprehend. =)

> (I decided to ask this here in case other people in this group had a
> similar desire).

Not bad thinking. =)

Enjoy!
Tim Hammerquist
-- 
That should probably be written:
    no !@#$%^&*:@!semicolon
    -- Larry Wall in <199710161841.LAA13208 / wall.org>